An independent watchmaker based in Switzerland, Laine is one of the lesser-known indie brands within the modern world of horology due to their relatively recent start. Founded in 2014 by Finnish watchmaker Torsti Laine on the back of winning A. Lange & Söhne's F.A. Lange Watchmaking Excellence Award of the same year, the small independent watchmaker's lack of publicity is not down to their lack of credentials. Trained in the same Finnish school of watchmaking as Stepan Sarpaneva and Kari Voutilainen, Laine is undoubtedly in some good company, and it shows in their watches.
Launched in 2021, the Laine V38 was introduced as a smaller and thinner watch that the brand was usually known for, keeping with the growing demand for elegant timepieces suitable for daily wear. A beautiful watch on and off the wrist, the Laine V38 is made of stainless steel and features a 38mm case that measures just 9mm thick. Entirely polished and sporting a domed bezel, the V38's case is a spectacular sight that only just begins to compare to the majesty that it contains.
Found within the border of its bezel is the key to Laine's deserved success and high praise, their immaculate dials. Constructed using three individual sections, the V38's dial is available with a myriad of finishing techniques, with the example I have here sporting the most exclusive, the triple guilloche in a stunning shade of blue. In the center section and within the seconds subdial at 6 o'clock, this blue is a shade darker than along the periphery, which contains striking 18kt white gold applied Breguet numerals. Expertly blending these textures, surfaces, and colors together, the V38's dial is an incredibly unique creation with an amazing depth to it. Furthermore, what makes this example even more special is that the original owner custom-made this piece to have Breguet hands to suit the numerals, rather than the standard production sword hands.
On the other side of the V38's stainless steel case lies the dashing Vaucher VMF 5401 movement in plain view beneath its sapphire crystal exhibition caseback. Finished to Laine's highest standards with Côtes de Genève throughout, hand-beveled bridges, and Laine's highly decorated calligraphy-style micro-rotor, the VMF 5401 looks just as finely tuned as the in-house high-horology movements that we see so many brands bring out. A delight to explore inside and out, the V38 is a beautiful expression of Torsti Laine's talent and the wonderful world of watchmaking that lies beyond the most prominent names that come up again and again.